Back in November, 2008 the Design and Construction Network (DCN) started with a single goal of turning online networking into real relationships. Since that time I have shared with you this ongoing case study through Cofebuz in hopes that we all might learn how to better leverage online networking sites to achieve the goal of fostering real business relationships.
Needless to say, the past seven weeks have beyond exceeded my expectations for the DCN. Here are just some of the highlights:
- The network has grown from 480 members to over 1100 members nationally
- For our second Happy Hour we had to close down a restaurant in Arlington Virginia to the general public as 323 members converged to attend, representing over 200+ design and construction firms.
- Members of the network have found new ways to connect in person, including the creation of a Design and Construction Network team that will be competing at the 2009 Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Real Estate Games! (www.realestategames.org)
- In the last several days members have proactively initiated the establishment of a Twitter group for anyone in the industry that is looking to connect via Twitter. (http://twittgroups.com/group/designconstructi)
The question people always ask is “where do you go from here?” The answer is simple and exciting: we are going to continue to focus on helping others develop relationships in the industry. To achieve this goal we are working to roll out some incredible changes. I am personally most excited about a new partnership that is unfolding which will help everyone in the network, not just those that are local to one of our Happy Hour locations.
In the next several weeks I will be making this new partnership public, but until then let me encourage you to think about the time you spend networking online. Are you truly building relationships, or just collecting links?
If you would like to join the Design and Construction Network just use this link and click “Join Now.” http://www.linkedin.com/groupInvitation?gid=926787